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April 04, 2012

My Kasual Kountry Weekend With the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan

Today's long read. Chilling, as all weirdo Southern racist portraits end up being. As you look into the ignorant ratfucker souls of these people whose paranoid eyes see demons and monsters in every corner and in every face. My Kasual Kountry Weekend With the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan
The speakers stood on stage at a small podium in front of a "NATIONAL Faith & Freedom CONFERENCE" banner the size and make of a "Grand Opening" sign at a new corner bodega. The emcee of the conference was Dave Long. He works at the local Meineke outlet. Long was a slim man with the nervous, manic tendencies of a vaudeville comedian who constantly feels like he's losing the crowd. Much of the opening night was devoted to scoffing at a story by AP reporter Jeannie Nuss that had come out just days earlier about how Harrison is trying to "rebrand" itself, promote diversity, and disassociate itself from its image as a Klan haven. "Harrison is ‘too dangerous for minorities?'" Long quoted. The whole crowd broke out in raucous applause. "Only 34 out of 13,000 residents are black?" he quoted. "Too many!" came the reply. "Now you know why people move here!" "Haw haw!" "Who wrote this article? Jeannie Nuss. I just caught that. Noose!" "Haw haw!" It's quite disconcerting in this modern age to be in a room full of white people who are all spouting the most vile racist slurs that one can imagine, openly, while everyone else laughs and applauds it. There is a Twilight Zone feeling to it, as if you'd stumbled into a secret clubhouse where white people can say those forbidden things—the Valhalla of dumb racist jokes. These things are usually hinted at, or said quietly under someone's breath as they glance over their shoulders to make sure that no non-white people are wandering by. Chris Rock has a bit where he imagines white people, in private, bellowing out "NIGGER!" at full volume as they sing along with rap songs. I can report that for the Klan, no rap accompaniment is necessary. . . . A number of the men who had been wearing t-shirts the night before showed up in Klan dress uniform: dark pants and a pressed white button-up shirt with various KKK patches sewn onto the shoulders and over the chest. For some, this gave them the appearance of trim and ready racist shock troops; for the less in-shape, it merely made them look like dumpy middle managers at a white supremacist fast food restaurant. Tight white dress shirts go poorly with back fat. . . .

Megaman as Malware

Is Megaman saving the world from an evil robot army or is he a disruptive terrorist attacking productive robots? Megaman as Malware | Overthinking It
In actuality, the Megaman games are really about two competing robot designers, Dr. Wily and Dr. Light, and Megaman’s role in sabotaging one on behalf of the other. While Dr. Wily focuses on creating multiple robots for a variety of purposes, Dr. Light has a much more efficient, though underhanded, approach. Dr. Light created a single type of robot who has the ability not only to hunt down and destroy other robots, but also to steal their functions. Is it any wonder that Megaman always allows Dr. Wily to live at the end of each game? This isn’t mercy, Megaman needs Dr. Wily alive to create more things for him to steal later. The genius of this approach is that in one attack, Megaman not only destroys one of Dr. Wily’s creations, but also modifies himself to be able to take over as that robot’s replacement, thus simultaneously creating and fulfilling a need. In other words, he’s a piece of malware with legs and an arm cannon. Keep in mind that Megaman is not unique – there are dozens, perhaps hundreds, of Megamans (Megamen?) in Dr. Light’s arsenal, and each one is capable of uploading his stolen designs back to the others. This is evidenced by the fact that when the player dies, Megaman is immediately replaced by an identical unit who already has all of the abilities that had been earned in the game so far. Dr. Light’s plan is to destroy all of Dr. Wily’s creations and replace them with a fleet of Megamans. The purpose could be financial; in a world seemingly dominated by robotic technology, quite a bit of profit could come from establishing himself as the premier robot maker. But the goal could be even more sinister than that. By inserting robots under his control into so many different parts of the existing society, Dr. Light is covertly taking over. He controls the skies (by replacing Airman), industrial manufacturing (Metalman), and even snakes (Snakeman). Megaman never questions the contradictions between what we’re told he’s doing and what he’s actually doing, because, as a robot, he doesn’t have free will. He’s been programmed by Dr. Light to seek out Dr. Wily’s robot masters and destroy them, and does so unquestioningly, probably without any kind of real awareness of his actions or their consequences.